Interview with Irish singer/songwriter Lynda Lucas

Editor’s Note: “Underground Nashville” covers artists, authors, musicians, poets, political figures, and other compelling people and happenings not typically covered by the mainstream Nashville media. It also presents reflections and commentary from an underground/indie perspective. As I told ‘The Tennessean’ in 2008, “since moving to Nashville twenty-five years ago, I have met people whose lives do not remotely reflect the caricature of what many outside our city presume to be a Nashvillian” or the Nashville experience. “Underground Nashville” thus explores the soul of the city, not its surface—offering “thoughts from the shadows of a great American city.”

Dave Carew

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As we head into the New Year, please do not forget those less fortunate than you. To make sure homeless human beings receive the food, love, and friendship they need, please donate to the Nashville Rescue Mission by calling (615) 255-2475 or by visiting Nashvillerescuemission.org.  Thank you.

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Interview with Dublin, Ireland-based
Singer/Songwriter Lynda Lucas

Editor’s Note: At the recent Gram Parsons Tribute Concert held in Nashville, Irish singer/songwriter Lynda Lucas, who opened the show, was an absolute stand-out. After she returned to Dublin, I asked Lynda if she would grant an interview to “Underground Nashville,” and she graciously complied. Here’s how our conversation went:

UNDERGROUND NASHVILLE: What do you feel is distinct about your music? Who have been your primary musical influences?

LYNDA LUCAS: My music, I hope, is expressed with honesty and passion. I try to feel the essence and underlying message of love and loss. My sound is predominantly country, with a hint of soul. Gram Parsons, Townes Van Zant, and Emmylou Harris have been my primary influences. I grew up listening to Hank Williams, Patsy Cline, Johnny Cash, The Everly Brothers, The Carter Family, and Roy Orbison. I particularly love the close harmonies of The Louvin Brothers. I also enjoy a lot of the more contemporary artists such as Alison Krauss, Gillian Welch, Lucinda Williams, Patty Griffin, and Buddy and Julie Miller. I am currently listening to an amazing album called Nashville by Solomon Burke, produced by Buddy Miller. [I also love] the old greats like Ralph Stanley, Bill Monroe, and George Jones. The list is endless.

UN: What is your musical dream?

LL: To reach a wider audience is what every artist wishes for. [To] reach and touch the primal feeling in everybody, of love and life. As a single, full-time mother, I know how challenging that is. And it can be difficult keeping your dreams alive. My motto is “Follow your dreams to the last whisper.” I have a personal childhood dream: to sing on the Grand Ole Opry. That’s a big dream, but it is still alive [laughs].

UN: What are you doing to make your dream come true?

LL: It has always been my plan to come to Nashville, and I made two trips this year. I came with a friend in June to celebrate her birthday .That was a lot of fun. I got to meet up with a friend who I met through MySpace, who is also a fine songwriter, Jim Callahan. We have been collaborating on songs ever since. I also got to sing at a bluegrass session in a [Nashville] club called The Station Inn. It was a real joy to sit in and sing with some fine musicians. The second trip in September was also through MySpace. I was invited to play at the second annual Gram Parsons Tribute Night. That was an honor. I received a great reception, and had great fun meeting all the other bands who traveled from all over the U S.


UN:  What about
Nashville has surprised you?

LL: I was very surprised at the diversity of music in Nashville. I always associated Nashville with country music. I am an old-fashioned girl at heart, and I love that old-time pure country sound.  I suppose music always progresses, and it has come around full circle, which is inevitable.

UN: What are your performing and recording plans for early 2010?

LL: I had a few Dublin dates recently. I am still writing my debut album, which I hope to record in January 2010.I am hoping to release it in summer. I will be returning to Nashville in July 2010 to hopefully play some live gigs. I am hoping to be invited back for the third Gram Parsons Tribute in September. Performing live is where I truly excel and am at my very best.

For more about Lynda Lucas, visit  MySpace.com/lyndalucasmusic.

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